(Topic ID: 128380)

STTNG mode ending with ball in play

By ClarkKent

4 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 10 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by ClarkKent
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders


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#1 4 years ago

Recently my STTNG started to behave strange: I noticed that in the Borg and Final Frontier multiball it happens that the mode suddenly ends (mostly when playing the mode for a longer period) and the regular mission that was active before continues - but with still two balls in play. Shouldn't this happen when only one ball is still in play? I've never heard that these two modes can end without draining all balls except one? It's also weird that the game recognizes the two balls correctly as when losing one the mission continues and only ends when losing the last ball. I do not have any problems with recognizing balls in the trough. Is it possible that any other opto could cause this? I upgraded from LA5 to LX7 but behavior started before this.

#2 4 years ago

Well, I can only image it somehow percieves an extra ball in the through due to an opto being out. Tried the switch test yet?

#3 4 years ago

I had a very similar problem with Ferengi multi ball, it would end with two balls still in play. Mine was related to a trough opto being out, so the machine thought a ball was there when it wasn't. Check that the trough switches all work in test mode.

#4 4 years ago

Thanx for the advice - I'll do that soon and report back here.

#5 4 years ago

I checked the ball trough switches and found out that the opto for the 5th ball has a loose connection. After rattling on the connector of the board I noticed that I can reproduce the behavior of the opto. So I think it's the connector. Maybe that's the reason why a cable fixer was installed by the last owner to fasten the connector on the board?

#6 4 years ago

The issue is likely the opto emitter, or the resistors on the trough board have legs that have broken off.

When I got my STTNG, someone had 'repaired' the trough by adding additional globs of solder to the broken resistor legs.

I ordered a metric crapton of resistors for the ball trough board when I did my repair, let me know if you'd like me to drop a few in the mail for you. If you're after a more plug & play solution, Great Lakes Modular sells replacement transmitter & receiver boards, for not very much moiney.


#8 4 years ago

At least 90% of all STTNG issues are the result of opto problems. Usually it's in the trough, but the ones down in the subway can also lead to craziness. Sometimes cleaning them (glass cleaner on a cotton swab) will do, sometimes it's a bad solder joint, sometimes the actual opto is bad. Mine once had a very intermittent issue with the optos that was actually caused by the crappy IDC connectors going to the board. The wire was severed partially through by the IDC. I ended up replacing that connector with crimp style and haven't had an issue since.

Either way...it always seems to come down to something with the optos.

#9 4 years ago
Quoted from ClarkKent:

Do you mean this one?

Yes, if the problem is the opto, usually it is the emitter -- the product you linked to -- that is the problem. You can try cleaning it (as Jediturtle says - cotton swab dipped in glass cleaner works great) along with the paired receiver.

If that doesn't help, you may need to replace them. Like I said, usually the emitter is the problem, but you may want to replace the pair while you are at it:


It's not a difficult job if you are comfortable soldering.

It may be worth checking the resistors on the trough boards as well (just check that the legs are not broken).

#10 4 years ago

Thanx for the info! It's planed that I'll do that this weekend. I will check the optos with a digital camera so I can see if the optos are working. But I think it's a loose connection, maybe really one of the resistors. Or the connector as I mentioned before...

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